Since the COVID-19 (or coronavirus) pandemic broke out in March, many in the recovery world have wondered: Will this situation lead to a spike in addiction cases? And while no definitive stats have been released yet, all answers are pointing Yes. We’ve mentioned the dependency risks involved with quarantining in many of our previous blogs and now, according to a local NBC affiliate, phone calls to addiction centers are increasing at a rapid rate.
NBC outlet WPTV published a story on the subject, highlighting a 25 percent spike in calls within the southern region of the United States. Obviously, admissions are a whole different story; as there are new challenges involved with sober living arrangements and social distancing. So it makes sense that support calls are the way many people are seeking out help.
At Valley Recovery Center, we offer a similar option; with counselors and support staff readily available via our toll-free 866-986-2486 assistance line. This usually leads to some sort of admission, but in today’s COVID-19 quarantine world it can be as simple as an encouraging phone call.
The WPTV article spoke with several former addicts, who admitted that right now can be a tough time for those who have used. One interviewee, who goes by the anonymous name of Missy, shared the everyday struggles she is facing amid the coronavirus.
“A lot of us, we get bored and we look for things to keep busy,” Missy admitted. “Especially when we have all these thoughts running through our head. But I have a 8-year-old daughter. I mean I have to do it for myself, but in the long run it’s for her.”
The good news is, people are still able to recognize their issues during this time and aren’t discouraged to seek out help. One of the big call outs is recognizing the warning signs (particularly when it comes to alcohol abuse) and having regular check ins to ensure your habit isn’t going too far. This is particularly important for people who happen to be alone right now.
Beyond phone support, many recovery facilities (including Alcoholics Anonymous) are embracing virtual chats. Using tools like Zoom, people can have face-to-face connections with counselors and sponsors, ensuring the human element is not lost.
As mentioned above, we heavily encourage anyone with a possible dependency issue to at least make a phone call. Numbers like ours are completely toll-free and there is always someone on the other line ready and willing to help.